Title

The role of social media in promoting vaccine hesitancy.

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

4-1-2022

Identifier

DOI: 10.1097/MOP.0000000000001111

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To offer: (1) Insight into the antivaccine movement's use of social media negatively impacting vaccine hesitancy and disease outbreaks, (2) Examples via case observations, and (3) Selected resources to combat vaccine hesitancy.

RECENT FINDINGS: For the past 25 years, daily social media usage has risen continually, allowing information to spread widely to a reading/listening/viewing audience via mostly unvetted social media sites. During a pandemic/epidemic (e.g., coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic), an overabundance of information from many sources, including social media, has led to what is now termed as an 'infodemic'. Infodemics arise from overwhelming amounts of both correct and incorrect information from experts and nonexperts alike. Differentiating correct from incorrect information is difficult for social media users who can be swayed by nonscientific 'influencers' or fear-mongering more than by vetted expert scientific information. Consequently, vaccine misinformation is steadily increasing via social media, the use of which is often believed to be associated with vaccine hesitancy. Stopping the spread of misinformation has been a difficult task.

SUMMARY: Vaccine misinformation on social media has been detrimental to public health. Vaccine advocates must increase the use of social media to the advantage of public health in the persistent struggle against vaccine hesitancy/refusal.

Journal Title

Current opinion in pediatrics

Volume

34

Issue

2

First Page

156

Last Page

162

MeSH Keywords

COVID-19; Communication; Humans; SARS-CoV-2; Social Media; Vaccination Hesitancy; Vaccines

Keywords

COVID-19; Communication; Humans; SARS-CoV-2; Social Media; Vaccination Hesitancy; Vaccines

Library Record

Share

COinS